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On our three-week tour of Bulgaria, we
travelled all around the country seeing
big cities such as Sofia...



...open countryside...

Open countryside


...small villages...

Small villages


...cultural sites such as Dyavolski most (Devil's Bridge)...

Devil's Bridge


...and the Black Sea coast

Black Sea


It was a birding trip, and so we were looking for...



...every bird that we could find - such as European Goldfinch...

European Goldfinch


...Corn Bunting, and...

Corn Bunting


...Red Crossbills

Red Crossbills


A tour of Sofia took us past Roman ruins and over to (in
the distance), a mosque dating back to the Ottoman period

Roman ruins and mosque


Christianity was also well represented with medieval churches...

Medieval church


...through Russian Orthodox...

Russian Orthodox church


...to the city's main Bulgarian Orthodox church - the
Saint Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

Saint Alexander Nevsky Cathedral


Simeon, our expert birding guide, was also well equipped
for, and highly dedicated, to the task of taking pictures
of tiny wildflowers

Wildflower photographer!


Orchid (sp.)


We found other plants to be much easier - such as fields of poppies...



...Wild Geranium, and...

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Tamarisk in flower



High on the cliff face at Ivanovo, the Church of
the Holy Virgin is hewn out of solid rock

Holy Virgin Church


The site is accessible by following a path winding up the face
of the cliff, and then squeezing through a narrow slit

Access through a narrow slit


Inside, the wall are decorated with with colourful frescos





Here is Simeon, loaded down with birding
technology - binoculars, a spotting scope,
a cellphone and an external speaker

Birding equipment


The latter is probably the only way to actual see
Cetti's Warbler in amongst the dense reed beds

Ceti's Warbler


However, White Storks are another story - usually readily
visible - several stories up!

Black Stork


The port city of Sozopol on the Black Sea



Working boats at the seaside...

Fishing boats


...and, nearby, birders also working hard

More searching!


But, today the birds are easy to identify - Ruddy Turnstone

Ruddy Turnstone


Great-crested Grebe

Great-crested Grebe


Local transportation can be quite colourful...

Local transportation


...but there can be unexpected hazards - our van was
broken into while we were out on a marsh. The local
police are dusting for the bad guys' fingerprints
(some of the ones on the door were Alan's!)



Still, usually, interactions with the locals were much less
traumatic. St. George's Day calls for dancing in the town square...

Local dancers


...and fireworks to light up the sky



Another fine birding trip!

Two happy birders!